The brown sign says it is a Historic Market Town. It has been in existence for at least 1200 years and has had a market for more than 1,000 years. Today it is part commuter town, 35 minutes from London Kings Cross, part market centre for surrounding villages and towns, and just a lovely place to live.
The ‘historic core’ does make walking and shopping in the town a good experience – with a lot of old buildings, winding streets and narrow alleys. One guide, produced by the Hitchin Quakers, provides information about the immense contribution that has made by the Friends over the centuries is here – Hitchin Q Walk (revised 2022)
For more History click here
All walking routes seem to lead to the cobbled Market Place.
There are no enormous shops in the town centre but several national retailers do occupy small premises. The 4-day-a-week market provides a variety of goods, from fresh fruit and veg to very old bric-a-brac. Independent retailers predominate. We have a Town Centre Manager who is a fulcrum for various activities in the town. He is employed by Hitchin Initiative, which has formed a Business Improvement District, which generates funds for various town centre improvements – more about Hitchin Initiative and the BID here.
Transport links are good, if you like that sort of thing – sited between the A1(M) and the M1, 10 miles from Luton Airport, and on the mainline from Kings Cross to the north and east. Cambridge is 35 miles away. The coast is sadly 90 minutes away, but with global warming it may get closer.
Links between organizations within the town are good. Links to our own member organizations are here.